I must confess, I made Chicken Divan with cans of soup for many years.
Since I’ve been trying to eat less processed food in the past few years, I’ve worked at re-creating this dish, without it. Truth be told, it’s not been that easy. I tried a lot of really bland Chicken Divan recipes! This is where I ended up and I think it’s pretty good. It’s also really flexible. You can extra ingredients like onions and mushrooms, if you like and you can change up the cheese to suit your family’s taste.
Try this with left-over turkey and/or asparagus, too!
Chicken Divan (without canned soup)
A tasty chicken casserole, just like the one we grew up with, but with no canned soup needed.
- 1 large bunch fresh broccoli, cut into bit-sized pieces, cooked and drained
- Optional: 8 oz. fresh sliced mushrooms, sauteed
- Optional: sauteed shallots or onion
- 4 Tbsp. butter
- 6 Tbsp. flour
- 2 cups chicken stock
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- 1/4-1/2 cup of your favourite mayonnaise
- Optional: 3 Tbsp. white wine or sherry
- Fresh lemon juice, to taste
- 1/8 – 1/4 tsp. grated nutmeg
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cooked and diced
- 2 cups cheddar, asiago or gruyere, shredded
- 1 cup Parmesan, shredded
- Optional: 1/2 cup fresh or dry bread crumbs mixed with 2 Tbsp. melted butter
- Optional Garnish: toasted slivered almonds 3/4 cup
- Optional Garnish: Chopped fresh parsley
- Cook the chicken and dice into bite-sized pieces. Cook the broccoli until tender (I like to use the microwave for this). Saute mushrooms and/or onion in a frying pan, if using.
- Spread the broccoli and mushroom/onions evenly over the bottom of a 13 x 9 baking pan.
- Melt butter in a medium saucepan, blend in flour gradually, stirring and cook for 1 minute. Add chicken stock and cook, stirring occasionally until thick. Simmer and stir for 10 minutes. Add cream, mayonnaise, wine, lemon juice, if using, nutmeg and salt and pepper. Pour half of sauce over broccoli then add the chicken on top. Cover with remaining sauce, then grated cheese and parmesan. If using bread crumbs, sprinkle over top.
- Bake uncovered at 375° F. for 30 minutes.
- Serve with rice.
Prep time: 20 min | Cook time: 30 min | Total time: 1 hour
Number of servings (yield): 6